I’ll have a story in the paper tomorrow about the Oklahoma City Public Schools school board meeting, but I wanted to post a list here of the contracts and agreements they approved here. A few notes about this list …
It includes only things of $100,000 or above. I didn’t include things previous ratified. I didn’t include things lumped together that totaled more than $100,000 that had multiple contractors. I didn’t include things that didn’t have specific contractors/sellers, such as the board giving the district the right to pay for things as they arise within a certain budget. Everything’s rounded to the nearest dollar. If you’d like to read the full list of all 10 bajillion contracts, just click here. Easy as pie.
So, without further adieu …
- Oklahoma Roofing and Sheet Metal, roofing and repairs, $15 million.
- PATCO, electrical repair, $15 million.
- Schuler Enterprises, plumbing repairs and service, $15 million.
- Hardesty Team Heating and Air Conditioning, chiller repair, $14 million.
- Commercial Roofing, roof repairs and replacements, $10 million.
- Oklahoma School Assurance Group, worker’s compensation insurance, $5,062,294.
- Apple Computer, technology and service, $4 million.
- Dell Computer, technology and service, $4 million.
- Ace Transfer and Storage, moving and storage, $3 million.
- Hiland Dairy Foods, milk, $2.6 million.
- Cooks Fencing, repair and replacement, $2.5 million.
- Buddy’s Produce, produce delivered to schools, $2.2 million.
- Pearson Agreement, professional development, $2 million.
- Independent Insurance Agents of Greater Oklahoma City, property and casualty insurance, $1,861,628.
- Sodexo, food service, $1,428,655.
- SAP, software, $1,249,142.
- RobertsTruckCenter, bus parts, $1.2 million.
- Core Knowledge, elementary school reform supplies, $1 million.
- Great Expectations Institutes, professional development, $1 million.
- Siemans Industry, heating and air repairs and maintenance, $1 million.
- Hunzicker Brothers, electrical supplies, $800,000.
- Office Depot, office supplies, $750,000.
- Voss Lighting, lamps, $750,000.
- Chartwells, child nutrition, $585,000.
- Edusoft, benchmark assessments, $532,837.
- Connections Learning Virtual Learning Programs, full-time virtual education program, $500,000.
- Johnson Controls, heating and air repairs and maintenance, $500,000.
- Oklahoma Department of Central Services, various vendors, $500,000.
- Central Oklahoma Winnelson, plumbing supplies, $500,000.
- Johnstone Supplies, heating and air supplies, $450,000.
- Fuzzell’s Business Equipment, toner cartridge supplies, $410,000.
- Woods Labor and Staffing, temporary landscaping labor, $380,000.
- MetroTech educational services dropout recovery and prevention program, $360,000.
- TransPar Group, transportation, $358,720.
- Marzano Research Laboratory, professional development, $357,500 atCentennialHigh Schooland $175,000 atDouglassHigh School.
- MASSCO Maintenance, custodial supplies, $350,000.
- Waste Management, trash service, $350,000.
- Allied Steel, crane service, $300,000.
- Federal Corporation, boiler repair, $300,000.
- MASSCO Maintenance, copy paper, $300,000.
- AT&T, hosting of SAP, $296,984.
- Center for Education Law, basic legal services, $250,000.
- Hardesty Team Heating and Air Conditioning, repairs and maintenance, $250,000.
- Harris House Moving Contractors, moving services, $250,000 and $150,000.
- Shannon Construction, building repairs, $250,000.
- Youth Cornerstone, truancy program, $192,000.
- EMC Hardware, network storage, $168,958.
- Dell, backup hardware, $167,820.
- Gates-MacGinitie, student tests, $164,585.
- Life Excelerator – Assessment of Personal Skills, teacher training, $163,250.
- Presort First Class, mail service, $160,000.
- ACT, testing supplies, $150,000.
- Filtertec, air filters, $150,000.
- R&R Delivery, courier mail, $125,000.
- Discovery Education, web and video service, $115,000.
- Smartweb Technology Programs, license, $106,061.
- Reliance Medical Sales, medical supplies, $106,000.
- American Eleveator Service, inspection and repair, $100,000.
- Hardesty Team Heating and Air Conditioning, boiler repair, $100,000.
- Magic Services, cafeteria laundering, $100,000.
I plan to keep a running total of how the ACE/EOI appeals process votes have turned out. Here’s a list of how the vote has gone by district.
- Broken Arrow: 2 granted, 4 denied, 15 dismissed
- Catoosa: 1 dismissed
- Choctow: 1 denied
- Lawton: 1 denied
- Mannford: 1 denied
- Marlow: 1 denied
- Norman: 1 denied
- Oklahoma City: 1 granted, 1 denied
- Schulter: 1 dismissed
- Strother: 1 denied
- Tahlequah: 1 denied
- Tulsa: 2 denied
- Tulsa Union: 2 granted, 1 denied
- Wagoner: 1 denied
And here’s a list of how the vote has gone by meeting.
Results from the June 5, 2012 Oklahoma Board of Education Meeting
Granted, Extenuating Circumstances: 1 (Broken Arrow)
Granted, Accepted into a University: 1 (Broken Arrow)
Postponed until June 28: 1 (Oklahoma City)
Denied: 7 (four from Broken Arrow, two from Tulsa, one from Wagoner)
Dismissed: 16 (one from Catoosa, 15 from Broken Arrow)
Results from the June 28, 2012 Oklahoma Board of Education Meeting
Granted, Extenuating Circumstances: 2 (Tulsa Union)
Granted, Accepted into a University: 1 (Oklahoma City)
Denied: 9 (Choctaw, Lawton, Mannford, Marlow, Norman, Oklahoma City, Strother, Tahlequah, Union)
Dismissed: 1 (Schulter)
Total Results from Oklahoma Board of Education for 2012
Granted, Extenuating Circumstances: 3 (one from Broken Arrow, two from Tulsa Union)
Granted, Accepted into a University: 2 (one from Broken Arrow, one from Oklahoma City)
Denied: 16 (four from Broken Arrow, one from Choctaw, one from Lawton, one from Mannford, one from Marlow, one from Norman, one from Oklahoma City, one from Strother, one from Tahlequah, two from Tulsa, one from Union, one from Wagoner)
Dismissed: 17 (one from Catoosa, 15 from Broken Arrow, one from Shulter)
A former official with Oklahoma City Public Schools who seems to be followed by controversy has landed a new job. Alan Ingram has been named the deputy commissioner for the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
Ingram worked as the executive director of federal programs and then the chief accountability officer for Oklahoma City Public Schools. He worked under John Q. Porter, the controversial superintendent who resigned after less than a year in the position. Ingram announced that he was a finalist for superintendent positions in Putnam City and Tacoma, Wash., though he was hired shortly after as the superintendent for schools in Springfield, Mass.
Here’s some news out of the capitol:
OKLAHOMA CITY – Legislation approved by the Oklahoma House of Representatives would implement better intervention efforts when students are identified as needing counseling.
House Bill 2641, by state Rep. Lee Denney, creates the Twenty-first Century Successful Living Act. The legislation would require the Office of Juvenile Affairs and the Oklahoma Association of Youth Services to identify an evidence-based counseling curriculum for schools.
“This legislation will allow schools to be more proactive dealing with students who are in need of counseling to help them resolve the issues that may prevent these kids from succeeding in school and becoming productive citizens,” said Denney, R-Cushing. “Hopefully, we can put a lot of troubled youth back on the path to being model students.”
Under the bill, the Office of Juvenile Affairs would make the counseling available to students and school districts through designated youth service agencies.
If the bill becomes law, each of the existing 41 youth services agencies would train two staff and deliver services to approximately 75 students, for a total of 6,150 students served in the coming fiscal year.
During the second year of the program, the number of students served would double to 12,300. During the third year of the program, the agency expects to serve 18,450 students.
House Bill 2641 passed the Oklahoma House of Representatives on a 70-15 vote. It now awaits a hearing in the state Senate.
Auditors have discovered three secret banks accounts used by the state Education Department. Check back to NewsOK.com for more as this develops. Here’s the auditor’s press release for now:
OKLAHOMA CITY – State Auditor Gary Jones released a supplemental investigative report today requested by the Oklahoma State Department of Education.
This supplemental investigative report follows an initial special audit report released January 4, 2012, which reviewed travel claims by a former state education department official.
“Superintendent Janet Barresi and the state School Board originally asked for a special audit regarding some suspicious travel claims by a former employee,” said State Auditor Gary Jones. “Information came to light during that investigation that suggested a much bigger problem had existed at the State Department of Education.
“We brought the information to the attention of Superintendent Barresi and requested permission to continue to investigate the existence of a previously unknown bank account,” Jones said. “We appreciate her full support and assistance in this matter.”
During the course of this limited investigation, the State Auditor became aware of three unauthorized, previously unknown bank accounts that were utilized as a slush fund to spend more than $2.3 million over a 10-year period. The use of these accounts allowed former State Education Department Officials to issue payments shielded from government oversight as well as public scrutiny.
SAI investigators spent many hours reviewing documents and conducting interviews during the course of this investigation.
The supplemental investigative report is available at the State Auditor’s website, www.sai.ok.gov
OKLAHOMA CITY – Now that many lawmakers are calling for a freeze on judicial pay and the salaries of all statewide officeholders, state Rep. Jason Nelson said it’s time to also freeze school superintendent salaries.
“Last year we saw hundreds of instances of superintendents getting pay raises while furloughing teachers and increasing class sizes,” said Nelson, R-Oklahoma City. “If it doesn’t make sense to give statewide officeholders a pay raise while Oklahoma is climbing out of recession, the same thing holds true for school superintendents at a time when education budgets have been cut. They should not be getting pay raises when teachers are being asked to do more with less.”
In a recent report, Oklahoma Watchdog found that 356 Oklahoma district superintendents (more than two-thirds) received some form of compensation increase this year. The combined expense of those raises was an extra $1.4 million annually.
Oklahoma Watchdog found that 37 of the superintendents receiving raises oversaw districts placed on the State Department of Education’s “Needs Improvement” list and 16 of those individuals received raises of $5,000 or more .
The Board of Judicial Compensation recently recommended pay increases for judges. Since the compensation of judges and statewide officials is linked, both would get a raise under that proposal.
State Rep. Scott Inman, leader of the House Democratic caucus, has been one of the most vocal critics of potential pay increases for statewide officeholders even though none of those officials could receive a salary increase during their current term in office.
Nelson said the Del City lawmaker should now join him in opposing superintendent pay raises.
“To protect school funding, we have to do more than oppose phantom pay raises that no current statewide officeholder is eligible to receive,” Nelson said. “It is ridiculous to complain about phantom pay raises for current statewide elected officials while ignoring $1.4 million in real pay raises for superintendents across the state.”
Last year, Nelson filed House Bill 1746 to require schools to spend at least 65 percent of funds on direct instructional activities within three years.
That bill included a provision that would have prevented superintendents from furloughing teachers without first having their financial plan reviewed by the State Board of Education so that classroom teachers would be protected.
“My legislation would have protected teachers from layoffs and furloughs, yet it was opposed by superintendents and their allies, including Representative Inman,” Nelson said. “I hope he and other opponents will now join me in standing up for teachers.”
Nelson praised State Superintendent of Public Instruction Janet Barresi, who announced she would not accept a pay raise when the issue was first raised this month.
“Superintendent Barresi did the right thing for Oklahoma students,” Nelson said. “Given that many local school superintendents are paid more than the governor or state superintendent, there is clearly no reason for local administrators to get a pay raise at the expense of teachers and classroom funding. It’s time to freeze superintendent pay.”
I blogged yesterday about the role public comments play at school board meetings. Today I’m following up with an answer for Kandis, who commented on the entry to ask for a defined purpose of a school board.
To answer her question, I called Jeff Mills, the new executive director of the Oklahoma State School Boards Association.
I’ll start with his response about what a school board is: a local governing body of a school district whose members are either elected or appointed to represent the public. Now on to what they do.
“One of their main functions is to hire a superintendent or a CEO to run that organization. … Their other major responsibility is setting policy,” Mills told me.
He went on to explain: “If I’m a superintendent, I can set a directive or I can set an interoffice activity, but the board is responsible to set legal and legislative type policy to manage the district. … A school board wouldn’t necessarily be involved in the day-to-day operations — that’s what the superintendent or CEO is for.”
Now if you’re wondering just what types of policies he’s referring to, don’t worry, he elaborated. Such policy responsibilities can include everything from school safety to budgeting and expenditures, he said.
Oklahoma City School Board meeting, Sept. 2, 2008 / By Wendy K. Kleinman, The Oklahoman
Mills also talked about the public comments issue that started this conversation.
“There are public participation policies out there, and some of those may limit (comments) to three minutes or so — each one will vary — and they may limit the number of people who may speak on one topic,” Mills said, “for the simple reason that if you have no order you could be there all night.”
UPDATE: To answer a question this entry prompted, school board members’ phone numbers and addresses, at least for Oklahoma City Public Schools, are available to the public. They are listed on this site.
Keep the comments and questions coming!
Back at the Oklahoma City School Board’s Sept. 2 meeting, Chairman Kirk Humphreys said he doesn’t think patrons should be able to raise personnel issues during public comments, upsetting the few parents in attendance.
Although his comments were made a few weeks ago, I’m bringing them up now because of a column in the most recent issue of The School Administrator magazine, which I just received.
The column is by Nicholas Caruso with the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education. You can read the whole piece here, but one line in particular intrigued me. He wrote:
The board meeting is a meeting held in public,
not a public meeting.
It seems to me that view aligns with Humphreys’ comments, while the parents I spoke with afterward said they feel as though the meetings belong to them.
What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
The economy, war and energy crisis all are more important issues facing the nation than education, according to an AP-Ipsos poll in July. But if you’re reading this blog, then education most likely does interest you.
So now that Barack Obama and John McCain have both formally accepted their nominations and spoken to the nation from their respective conventions, I thought I’d post information about each of their education plans. They all have a lot of ideas, so following are the links to the details of them.
Poke around, read both sides, and come back here to share your thoughts.
Looking to learn to write the great American novel? Or to learn to teach others to write novels, poetry and nonfiction?
State Regents last week approved a new degree program at Oklahoma State University: a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing.
The graduate program aims to train the practicing writer/teacher and will begin enrollment in fall 2012. The Association of Writers and Writing Programs cited an increase in the number of jobs for writers, both in academic jobs and as self-employed or freelance.
The MFA in creative writing requires 42 to 45 credit hours.
Other new programs approved by State Regents are:
OSU-OKC: Associate in Applied Science in Dietetic Technology; East Central University, Ada: Master of Science in Accounting; Tulsa Community College: Associate in Applied Science in Computer Programming, Transaction Processing Facility and Certificate in Computer Programming, Transaction Processing Facility; and Western Oklahoma State College, Altus: Associate in Applied Science in Production Agriculture.